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Alternative To Taxation - Drugs and Gambling

FREEDO
Posts: 21,057
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8/12/2012 9:01:27 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I posit another alternative to taxation.

The US government collects about 1.8 trillion dollars yearly in income taxes alone.

Casinos in the US collect about 4.8 billion dollars a year.

About 60 billion dollars a year is spent on illegal drugs in the US. That's not even counting tobacco and alcohol.

I ask you to imagine if these two things were nationalized. With both, it seems natural to predict that both their revenues would go up. Many more people would indulge in drugs with them becoming acceptable and easily accessible, moreover that it would be seen as something we depend on. Similarly with gambling, it could even become portrayed as a patriotic duty.

In other words, if these things were implemented, we could entirely phase out the income tax. The government gets it revenue through voluntary means.

I think there's something beautiful about the idea a country that lives off it's "vices".

There are more things you could incorporate into this. Such as prostitution.

Your thoughts?
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fnord
LaissezFaire
Posts: 2,050
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8/12/2012 9:10:57 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
There is zero chance that the money from drugs and gambling would go up 2500%+ if they were nationalized. That's completely ridiculous.
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: At 6/22/2011 6:57:23 PM, el-badgero wrote:
: i didn't like [Obama]. he was the only black dude in moneygall yet he claimed to be home. obvious liar is obvious liar. i bet him and bin laden are bumfvcking right now.
FREEDO
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8/12/2012 9:20:07 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 8/12/2012 9:10:57 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
There is zero chance that the money from drugs and gambling would go up 2500%+ if they were nationalized. That's completely ridiculous.

You don't think 25 more people for every prior 1 could become a regular addictive drug user if this was implemented? I don't think it seems like a stretch.
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fnord
Koopin
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8/12/2012 9:22:15 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Drugs are expensive because they are hard to get. I'd wager the price of drugs would drop drastically when factories start mass producing them.
kfc
LaissezFaire
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8/12/2012 9:24:52 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 8/12/2012 9:20:07 PM, FREEDO wrote:
At 8/12/2012 9:10:57 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
There is zero chance that the money from drugs and gambling would go up 2500%+ if they were nationalized. That's completely ridiculous.

You don't think 25 more people for every prior 1 could become a regular addictive drug user if this was implemented? I don't think it seems like a stretch.

Well, since more than 4% of Americans use drugs, it's not only a stretch, it's impossible. But even if that wasn't the case, it's far beyond a stretch--it's just absurd. How could you think this is even remotely close to possible?
Should we subsidize education?
http://www.debate.org...

http://mises.org...

http://lewrockwell.com...

http://antiwar.com...

: At 6/22/2011 6:57:23 PM, el-badgero wrote:
: i didn't like [Obama]. he was the only black dude in moneygall yet he claimed to be home. obvious liar is obvious liar. i bet him and bin laden are bumfvcking right now.
LaissezFaire
Posts: 2,050
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8/12/2012 9:26:12 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
And why would you think people would want to voluntarily give more money to the government? They could pay extra income taxes now if they wanted to as a 'patriotic duty'--but no one does.
Should we subsidize education?
http://www.debate.org...

http://mises.org...

http://lewrockwell.com...

http://antiwar.com...

: At 6/22/2011 6:57:23 PM, el-badgero wrote:
: i didn't like [Obama]. he was the only black dude in moneygall yet he claimed to be home. obvious liar is obvious liar. i bet him and bin laden are bumfvcking right now.
FREEDO
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8/12/2012 9:28:34 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 8/12/2012 9:22:15 PM, Koopin wrote:
Drugs are expensive because they are hard to get. I'd wager the price of drugs would drop drastically when factories start mass producing them.

That's only what would happen if you legalized them normally. In this case, only the government can sell. And they control the price.
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fnord
FREEDO
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8/12/2012 9:29:57 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 8/12/2012 9:24:52 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
At 8/12/2012 9:20:07 PM, FREEDO wrote:
At 8/12/2012 9:10:57 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
There is zero chance that the money from drugs and gambling would go up 2500%+ if they were nationalized. That's completely ridiculous.

You don't think 25 more people for every prior 1 could become a regular addictive drug user if this was implemented? I don't think it seems like a stretch.

Well, since more than 4% of Americans use drugs, it's not only a stretch, it's impossible. But even if that wasn't the case, it's far beyond a stretch--it's just absurd. How could you think this is even remotely close to possible?
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
Koopin
Posts: 12,090
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8/12/2012 9:34:04 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 8/12/2012 9:28:34 PM, FREEDO wrote:
At 8/12/2012 9:22:15 PM, Koopin wrote:
Drugs are expensive because they are hard to get. I'd wager the price of drugs would drop drastically when factories start mass producing them.

That's only what would happen if you legalized them normally. In this case, only the government can sell. And they control the price.

A limited supply means a fewer amount of people who'd buy. It couldn't possibly be enough to replace taxes at the rate America is spending.
kfc
FREEDO
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8/12/2012 9:37:11 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 8/12/2012 9:34:04 PM, Koopin wrote:
At 8/12/2012 9:28:34 PM, FREEDO wrote:
At 8/12/2012 9:22:15 PM, Koopin wrote:
Drugs are expensive because they are hard to get. I'd wager the price of drugs would drop drastically when factories start mass producing them.

That's only what would happen if you legalized them normally. In this case, only the government can sell. And they control the price.

A limited supply means a fewer amount of people who'd buy. It couldn't possibly be enough to replace taxes at the rate America is spending.

Who says a single source equates to a limited supply? It could actually increase. And probably would.

Also, I would think those on the economic right would like this. Not only does it get rid of taxes. It would also force government to cut spending if this is it's only way to get revenue.
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fnord
NixonianVolkswagen
Posts: 481
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8/13/2012 7:30:41 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Have we factored in those who, because they're now addicted to drugs, will be less productive? Even if there's support, responsibility mores, and so forth, it may well be the case that some of the able become less able.

I'm not saying this would necessarily wholly mitigate the positives, just that it should be considered.
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16kadams
Posts: 10,497
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8/18/2012 5:51:02 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Cool, I would never get taxed
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THEBOMB
Posts: 2,872
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8/18/2012 6:24:00 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
http://www.ibhinc.org...

They found that the percentage of drug users in the US, if you ended prohibition, would be 51.4%. That isn't enough unless you tax the drugs at a ridiculous percentage.

"The cost of all illicit drugs combined is $193 billion annually." If you legalized drugs you could expect this to rise.
Chaos88
Posts: 247
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8/19/2012 7:01:39 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
"The cost of all illicit drugs combined is $193 billion annually." If you legalized drugs you could expect this to rise.

It depends on what constitute costs. In this context, I assume it is referring to DEA agents' pay, weapons, and prisons. It may include other negative costs, like gang violence and police task forces and PSA's. These should go down tremendously, if legalized.

However, if the costs are solely medical treatment and rehab and things like that, then the costs would likely go up.
Chaos88
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8/19/2012 7:11:54 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Freedo, I have used this argument to advocate legalizing drugs; however, never to replace the tax code.

First, you assume that all this money is collected as tax, when the only money that would be collected as taxes are direct taxes on the drugs themselves. So, the cost of goods would rise, due to the tax (think of cigarettes).

However, with the black market gone, the drugs' cost should go down, so it could be a wash for the consumer (BM price = legal price + tax). The revenue generated from these drugs are not necessarily taxable, because they are offset by expenses.

However, these expenses (and profits) are potentially taxable, like wages, which would increase the amount of taxes collected. This would also spur job growth.

Drugs could not replace the tax code. However, legalizing drugs could lower tax rates by being a new stream of revenue. Currently, the second largest revenue stream for the gov't is the liquor tax. Perhaps by legalization, income taxes could drop five points across the board, which would still be great.
THEBOMB
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8/19/2012 7:20:33 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 8/19/2012 7:01:39 AM, Chaos88 wrote:
"The cost of all illicit drugs combined is $193 billion annually." If you legalized drugs you could expect this to rise.

It depends on what constitute costs. In this context, I assume it is referring to DEA agents' pay, weapons, and prisons. It may include other negative costs, like gang violence and police task forces and PSA's. These should go down tremendously, if legalized.

However, if the costs are solely medical treatment and rehab and things like that, then the costs would likely go up.

No, that was the social costs, lost productivity, health costs, etc.

Supply and demand reduction cost "supply reduction efforts counted for $9.9 billion (64%) and demand reduction efforts $5.6 billion (36%)" at least in the 2010 Fiscal Year.